As American-owned streaming services continue their conquest of the entire globe, some international media firms aren’t quite ready to give up the fight. Netflix and Amazon might be gaining subscribers in nearly every country, but opposition to this American streaming dominance is growing. In order to resist what it sees as growing cultural imperialism of the streaming video variety, the British Broadcasting Corporation has announced a massive investment plan designed to directly counter American streaming services.
The BBC’s latest Annual Plan has called for an investment of over PS34m ($43 million USD) in children’s video and other media. That investment will go towards developing a multitude of enriching content for kids including streaming video platforms, blogs and vlogs, online educational tools, games, apps, and podcasts. The BBC makes no efforts to hide the fact that the investment initiative is designed to directly oppose the dominance of American streaming services:
Investment in British content – particularly for the young – is vital, unless we want more of our culture shaped and defined by the rise of West Coast American companies. Our ambition to reinvent the BBC for a new generation is our biggest priority for next year. Every part of the BBC will need to contribute to meeting this challenge.
The BBC’s efforts are in response to a steady decline in viewership among British children in recent years. Due to the popularity of American streaming video products like Amazon Video, Netflix, and YouTube, the BBC and its iPlayer streaming service have been losing viewers. This latest investment plan might turn things around, but will take at least three years to fulfill. The plan has been hailed as the largest investment in British children’s services the generation has seen. Given that the likes of Netflix and PBS Kids continue to expand their kid-friendly options, the BBC likely has its work cut out for it.